Elizabeth Gilbert returns to the TED stage. Once she was an "unpublished diner waitress," devastated by rejection letters, and yet, in the wake of the success of 'Eat, Pray, Love,' she found herself identifying strongly with her former self. With beautiful insight, Gilbert reflects on why success can be as disorienting as failure and offers a simple — though hard — way to carry on, regardless of outcomes.
We live in an age of invented, alternate worlds. Tolkien’s Middle-earth, Rowling’s Hogwarts, the dystopic universe of “The Hunger Games,” the places where vampires and zombies prowl: These places are having their day. Yet in spite of the vogue for fantasy fiction, in the finest of literature’s fictional microcosms there is more truth than fantasy. In William Faulkner’s Yoknapatawpha, R. K. Narayan’s Malgudi and, yes, the Macondo of Gabriel García Márquez, imagination is used to enrich reality, not to escape from it.
Entertainment Weekly's On The Books section points us to this gem:
Don’t you wish that Neil Gaiman was your kooky uncle? He would sneak you into the circus and you’d get to hold the Biggest Amazonian Python That Ever Lived (whose name is Lucille). He’d help you put frogs in your sister’s bathtub. He’d keep secrets for you, like that time that you accidentally buried your dad’s favorite watch in the park. He would agree that pirate treasure is only good if it’s buried. To help you cement the fantasy that Gaiman is your favorite uncle, here he is reading Dr. Seuss’ Green Eggs and Ham.
There has been a lot of talk about drones this week. This is a beautiful use of the technology, a unique look inside nypl’s architecture using ultralight, flying technology.
The New York Public Library is a stunning piece of architecture. Its Rose Reading Room has 51-foot ceilings and measures the length of a football field (that’s more than a Manhattan block), yet it has no columns, making it one of the largest open interiors in the world.
If you’re Nate Bolt--Facebook design researcher, amateur filmmaker, and friend of the NYPL’s skunkworks team--you get invited to fly a drone through the space. Bolt shot the video you see here using an ultralight setup--a DJI Phantom quadcopter drone loaded with a GoPro and an iPhone. That’s roughly $1,500 in equipment weighing just a bit over two pounds. It allowed Bolt to film with a god-like perspective as the camera floats over shoulders and through doorways to explore the nuance of such grand architecture.